Can My Child Custody Agreement Be Changed?

Dad buckling kids into car

A divorce can have a serious impact on a child’s life, which is why states require parents to continually support their children, both emotionally and financially. And though the law varies state-to-state, courts take custody matters very seriously.

As part of their divorce, parents have to create a child custody plan that outlines physical and legal custody, visitation schedules, health insurance, and often child support. But from job promotions to family illnesses, it’s only natural for things to change in your life. And when they do, you’ll need to modify your custody agreement.

Modifying Your Child Custody Agreement in Tennessee

Over time, many families will need to adjust their custody agreement in order to benefit every party involved. However, in order to be granted a modification, you must show the court that your request is necessary and will ultimately benefit your child.

Some of the most common reasons for a modification include:

  • A substantial change of circumstance of the parent or child.
    • Changes in which parent is the custodial guardian.
    • Changes in the parent or child’s mental or physical health.
    • Needing to relocate out of state.
  • There was abuse, neglect, or abandonment.
  • There has been a substantial increase or decrease in one parent’s income.

To begin the modification process, you should reach out to your former spouse and try to agree on a set of terms and conditions. Once both parents have agreed to the written changes, it still needs to be presented to a judge and ruled on.

If you and your ex are not speaking or are unable to agree to new conditions, it’s imperative that you hire an attorney who focuses on family law. All family law matters are complicated, but modifications can be especially tricky and jeopardize your relationship with your child if not handled carefully.

E. Evan Cope, PLLC is a dedicated, tough, and experienced litigator who has practiced law in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and throughout Middle Tennessee since 2001. Contact our law office today online or at (615) 640-4241 to request an initial consultation.